Pandemic, school and strategic inefficiency
Sara Leghissa’s artistic project La scuola ha riaperto come dopo una nevicata (The School Reopened as After a Snowfall) was conceived during the assemblies organized upon the reopening of schools when the Covid-19 emergence ended, to give voice to the students who had no space to express their views during the pandemic. Leghissa – in collaboration with researcher and activist Maddalena Fragnito and designer Marzia Dalfini – carried on her visual auto-inquiry practice. She met students from different schools, creating spaces for listening and sharing points of view. Afterwards, posters were put up in some cities and locations throughout Italy.
A book of the same name was published by NERO in 2023. It reflects the choral quality of the ideas generated during the meetings, as it incorporates all the voices, investigates the relationship between technologies and the body, mental and physical health, the grading system in education, occupations and the return to school after the emergency, the repression students underwent once allowed to leave their houses. As a reaction to Italy’s indifference to the progressive dismantling of public schools and public services in general, La scuola ha riaperto come dopo una nevicata (The School Reopened as After a Snowfall) affirms the right to imagine a different school from the inside «in a political, social and ecologic context more joyful and combative than the material representation of a doomsday-like destruction of public education, aesthetic and policies that is pervasively everywhere».
Maddalena Fragnito and Sara Leghissa will talk about all this with Valerio Mannucci, editor at NERO.
Sara Leghissa is a Milan-based independent artist. Her practices focuses on the public space through a principle of resource-based ecology (using what is already available in the environment as much as possible). She creates systems and devices that blend in the context her aim being to convey images and contents, and to intercept and meet different audiences through the use of accessible and everyday technology. Co-founder of the artistic project Strasse, she collaborates with various artists and groups. She has presented her works at national and international festivals and events. She is coordinator of Nobodys Business, an independent platform for the sharing of practices in the field of performing arts; NESSUNO, a location meant to build communities and resistance through the practice of partying; and Una Sauna, a wooden room equipped with instruments to get high-temperature dry air as a means for meeting and creating collective practices.
Maddalena Fragnito is a militant feminist researcher whose work is at the intersection of arts, care-giving policies and social movements. In Milan she co-founded MACAO (2012/22), an independent cultural centre, and Soprasotto (2013), a “pirate” nursery school managed by the neighbourhood. She is a member of such research groups as Pirate Care (2019), OBOT (2020) and Institute of Radical Imagination (2021). Her latest published work is Ecologie della cura: Prospettive transfemministe (Orthotes, 2021), co-curated with Miriam Tola. She is currently studying for a PhD at the Center for Post digital Cultures of Coventry University.
Marzia Dalfini works in the fields of graphic design, set design and artistic pedagogy. As a graphic and set designer, she works with artists, performers and festivals. She collaborates to the development and realisation of social arts project with independent organizations. She holds art workshops for children with particular attention to active pedagogy.
Before becoming a publication, La scuola ha riaperto come dopo una nevicata is an art project commissioned by Fondazione Il Lazzaretto di Milano nel 2020
with the contribution of Collettivo CHe del Liceo Scientifico Vittorini(Milano), Collettivo del Liceo Ginnasio Statale Virgilio (Roma), Collettivo Mille Papaveri Rossi del Liceo Carducci (Milano), Coordinamento studenti degli istituti AFAM Calliope (Milano), Istituto Statale d’Istruzione Superiore Gramsci–Keynes (Prato), Istituto Tecnico Statale a Ordinamento Speciale Albe Steiner (Torino), Liceo Artistico Statale G. C. Argan (Roma), Liceo Classico Giacomo Leopardi (Recanati), Liceo Delle Scienze Umane Stella Maris (Civitanova Marche), Liceo Scientifico Statale Augusto Righi (Roma), Liceo Statale Chiabrera Martini (Savona), Scuola Secondaria Statale di I grado Busoni–Vanghetti (Empoli), Unione degli Studenti Milano and students Tommaso Fogli, Zoe Di Giorgio, Alice Prati, Tess e Ludovico Ottolina
graphics Marzia Dalfini
text by Maddalena Fragnito
coordination Sara Leghissa
NERO Editions 2023
ph Sara Leghissa and Marzia Dalfini